Project #1905

Safe Drinking Water for 80,000 Children in Bolivia

by SODIS Foundation
The project reached more than 85,000 children
The project reached more than 85,000 children

Dear supporters,

We just received very good news - for you, for the SODIS Foundation and for the project you helped funding:

Thanks to a substantial corporate donation last week, we reached our fundraising target ahead of time. This means that the project is fully funded. Throughout the project, we provided training on safe drinking water, improved hygiene and sanitation to more than 85,000 school kids in 231 schools in Bolivia.

We actually exceeded our fundraising target by $3,410. This amount now will be used in our new project, which is already online and which you can support as well: If you want to follow our activities, please subscribe to the updates of this project or make a donation. In this new project, we will be improving water and sanitation services of more than 9500 children in 40 schools in Tiquipaya (Bolivia).

Furthermore, we also would like to point out to a very special opportunity: thanks to support of the Rockefeller Foundation and, our project to develop a SODIS indicator will continue. Donations to our project will be matched by 200% - that's triplicating the amount you donate! This mechanism will only last until February 29 and is valid for donations of up to $1,000. For example, if you donate $50, the project will actually receive $150, which will cover the costs of a training workshop and focus group discussion in order to further improve the indicator design we are working with. Please make use of this unique opportunity and pass on the word to others. You can read more about this initiative on this blog or in this article.

Thank you again for your support throughout the project.

Best regards,
Matthias Saladin


Safe drinking water - thanks to SODIS
Safe drinking water - thanks to SODIS

Dear friends and supporters,

As a previous donor to projects of the SODIS Foundation, you may be interested in an exciting initiative we are involved: The Rockefeller Foundation, GlobalGiving and InnoCentive are continuing their Global Giveback Challenge to find solutions to water-related problems in developing countries. A project of the SODIS Foundation, related to the development of a low-cost radiation indicator ("SODIS indicator"), is one of only four projects which have been selected at global level, and we are truly excited about this opportunity.

Between now and February 29, all donations received through to our project will be matched by 200%! That is, for each dollar donated, our sponsors will add two more, thus tripling the amount you donate. We think this is a great opportunity to achieve a great impact and support this important initiative further. Please be aware that matching funds are limited, so act quickly (availability of matching funds can be checked here).

Please share this information with friends and families who may be interested in making a donation or just in spreading the word.

Best regards,
Matthias Saladin


P.S: You can also support our projects by mobile phone (Only works for US mobile phones):

Text GIVE 7089 to 80088 to donate $10 to Develop an indicator for Solar Water Disinfection.

Text GIVE 1905 to 80088 to donate $10 to provide safe water for a child.

Message and data rates may apply. Full Terms:

Early-stage prototype of a SODIS indicator
Early-stage prototype of a SODIS indicator


Children and teacher during a training session
Children and teacher during a training session

Dear Supporters,

As we announced earlier, we are now in the third phase of our project for schools in Bolivia. During this phase, the project will be implemented in 40 schools in Tiquipaya, a municipality close to the city of Cochabamba. Training of teachers started in October and continued until the middle of December. Currently, the schools are closed (for summer vacation!) in Bolivia, and classes will start again in early February with the next phase of the project.

Today, we want to tell you the story of the school named “Floresta Collpapampa”. It’s the first school in Tiquipaya where not only the teachers have been trained in methods to obtain safe drinking water, but also these methods are practiced on a daily basis. Floresta Callpapampa is a school in the Eastern part of the municipality where 250 children go to class of the primary level. The teachers were enthusiastic about the novel methodology which is being implemented by the SODIS Foundation, and the director of the school proudly accepted the challenge to be the first school of the project which can offer SAFE DRINKING WATER to its pupils and teachers. Thus, Christmas was an ideal opportunity to celebrate and to finish the year with many smiling faces.

From the SODIS Foundation, we also would like to announce more GOOD NEWS: User’s of mobile phones in the US can now donate to our project with a text message:

Text GIVE 1905 to 80088 to donate 10$ to our project. Messege and data rates may apply. Read full terms:


Wishing you all a happy Holiday Season and all the best for 2012,

With best regards from the whole project team,

Matthias Saladin


District Director signing the project agreement
District Director signing the project agreement

Dear supporters,

We are excited to inform you that we entered the third phase of the initiative to bring safe water to schools in Bolivia. The long-time supporters among you may remember that during the first phase of the initiative (2008-2009) we implemented our previously tested methodology in more than 230 schools. During that phase, we reached more than 80,000 school kids in three Departments of Bolivia.

Throughout the second phase (2010) we worked together with UNICEF in schools in several communities in the Andean region of Bolivia in order to develop our methodology further. In the third phase (2011-2012), we include novel technologies (like on-site generation of chlorine solution for water disinfection) and test them for their acceptance and adequacy in rural and peri-urban schools.

Over the past few months, we have been setting up the institutional framework for this new project phase. On September 1st, the new phase was officially launched at a ceremony during which the District Director of the Ministry of Education, along with Representatives of the Municipality of Tiquipaya and of the SODIS Foundation signed the project agreement (see pictures). The project will be implemented in 40 rural and peri-urban schools of Tiquipaya, a municipality in the Department of Cochabamba. The initiative also received the formal support of the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) and the local water and sanitation service provider (SENASBA). Involving so many institutions slows the project down in the beginning. However, we consider that this is more than compensated for in later phases of the process when we want to disseminate the lessons learned and eventually integrate the successful elements of this project into other initiatives. We strongly believe that working in an isolated, project-based manner is a thing of the past - today’s complex challenges require mixed networks of organizations cooperating and complementing each other.

On a separate note, we would like to announce that Wednesday, October 19 is a Bonus Day on Global Giving. This means that all donations we receive that day through (credit card donations of up to 1,000 dollars) will be complemented by another 30% by the Global Giving Foundation. This is a great opportunity (and the last one this calendar year) to make your donation go even further – we can reach 30% more children if you donate that specific day, with no extra cost for you.

For your continuing support and interest we want to thank you very much. We will keep you informed about the further development of this exciting initiative and look forward to receiving feedback from you.

Best regards from the whole project team,

Matthias Saladin

Project leader

Inauguration of the new project phase
Inauguration of the new project phase


A girl filling a PET bottle to do SODIS
A girl filling a PET bottle to do SODIS

Dear supporters,

Last week, children in most schools in Bolivia went back to classes after winter break. Yes, this is winter time in the Southern part of the planet, and this winter has been rather cold. In fact, in the Bolivian Departments of Oruro and Potosí, start of classes had to be delayed by a week because of the cold – and due to the fact that most schools do not have heating. While in other parts of the world people worry about the quality of the teaching staff and indicators like the student-teacher ratio, in Bolivia the core challenges are related to rather basic issues like these ones:

-          Is there heating?

-          Is there water?

-          Are there toilets (or at least latrines)?

-          Are there tables and chairs?

-          Is there a teacher?

Only if these basic things are in place, teaching and learning can take place. This is why our project focuses on improving water and sanitation services at schools. In the first phase, we involved some 230 schools in the Departments of La Paz, Oruro and Cochabamba. In 2011, we included additional 20 schools in the Department of Cochabamba, where we also are working with women’s groups in the same communities. Improving water and sanitation at schools not only reduces diarrhea and other diseases but also absenteeism, which is a very common problem in countries like Bolivia.

As we communicated previously, June 16 was a special fundraising opportunity. Our on-line campaign was very successful, generating donations for more than 2,000 US$ in a single day, which was complemented by additional 30% by the Global Giving Foundation. We would like to thank all of our donors who supported our project on that specific date. As promised, all the people making a contribution that day entered a lottery for a special prize: a large print of a picture from our project, taken by professional photographer Matteo Bertolini (see picture). Congratulations to the lucky winner on behalf of the project team.

Currently, we are preparing a next phase of the project for 40 schools in the Municipality of Tiquipaya and currently are negotiating with the Ministry of Education and some potential donors to strengthen the project further. The goal of the next project phase will be to pilot additional innovative interventions for improving water quality and sanitary conditions at schools, whereas we keep developing our educational methodology.

We are looking forward to start the next project phase soon and will keep you informed about further developments on our side. We also would like to express our gratitude for your continued support to the project – donations of any amount are welcome to keep the project going.

Best regards from the whole project team,

Matthias Saladin

P.S. Please mark October 19th on your agenda – this will be this year’s last chance to have your donation complemented. Each donation you make that day (up to the amount of 1,000 US$) will be increased by 30%, making your contribution have even more impact and helping more children to obtain safe drinking water.



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Organization Information

SODIS Foundation

Location: Cochabamba - Bolivia
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Matthias Saladin
Executive Co-Director
Cochabamba, Cochabamba Bolivia

Funded Project!

Thanks to 198 donors like you, a total of $33,970 was raised for this project on GlobalGiving. Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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